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Health Insurance Accountability and Portability Act, also known as HIPAA is a law in the United States that protects the privacy of a patient’s medical records and all the other information regarding their health that are provided to medical facilities, hospitals, clinics, and doctors.
It seeks to ensure that health insurance coverage is provided for everyone and also lower the cost of medical facilities by gearing towards automating the administrative system. Furthermore, HIPAA has been established to prevent any abuse, waste or fraud in healthcare delivery and healthcare insurance.
You can be fully HIPAA compliant with the use of Amazon Web Services (AWS). If you want to know more about AWS HIPAA compliance, then you can check out the blog of Romexsoft. It is a Ukrainian cloud service provider with branches even in London. They have a partnership with AWS which will be helpful for you. Their engineers have a high level of experience in implementing HIPAA and creating reliable HIPAA compliant environments.
Best Practices for AWS HIPAA compliance
The following are some essential practices that you must know about AWS HIPAA compliance.
- HIPAA is your responsibility: AWS operates as a shared responsibility model where Amazon is responsible for some parts of security and compliance, and the user is responsible for others. AWS has tools to make you HIPAA compliant, but you have to check for the results of using AWS yourself.
- Go above HIPAA compliance: HIPAA standards were fully published in 2003, making it outdated. There are new threats and process that HIPAA has not been updated with. You cannot fully rely on HIPAA as it can make you vulnerable to threats and attacks.
- Make Amazon sign a Business Associate Agreement (BAA): AWS certifies that using their services will ensure that you are HIPAA compliant. You can make them sign a BAA which makes them share some legal responsibility in case of personal medical records in cases of attacks and threats.
- Conduct an inventory check of your medical records: You must have a secure part in your system that handles all the personal medical files of patients. Keeping it secure is HIPAA compliance.
- Secure your data at transit and in rest: You can protect your data by using strong SSL certificates with strict termination policies. Furthermore, you can encrypt your data at the application level to enhance SSL.
- Keep a log of everything: HIPAA rules require a log of who accesses patient files and made any kind of updates. You should be able to verify the changes as correct to make sure the record is valid. Logging all these can help produce clean reports during auditing.
- Authenticate: You must have strict authentication policies for users who can access information. Identity and Access Management System on AWS can help manage the credentials of authorized users.
- Know which AWS tools are for HIPAA compliance: Amazon has published a white paper that details how you can set up a system that helps you achieve HIPAA compliance. It provides any technical, administrative, and physical safeguards as per HIPAA.
The points mentioned above are checklists to make sure that you are HIPAA compliant, by using the AWS services. However, you must not depend fully upon AWS and check for yourself.